Rosewater, homemade

May 21, 2014  • 

Rosewater in Lebanon is homemade in the villages with a certain type of rose, called ward joury (Rosa Damascena); the sweetest and most delicate rose ever! The traditional procedure is to use a distiller (karaké). I just wanted to see if i could make some rosewater without having to buy or borrow a distiller. I tried it three times, first using a techniqur I read online which called for placing a brick in a pot. Finally, I simplified it even further and yesterday made rosewater with only a pot and a small pyrex bowl lodged inside.  making rosewater INGREDIENTS:  4 cups (loose, about 4 ounces) of rose petals (Rosa Damascena) 2 cups distilled water (or regular water)  place ice cubes 1. In a pot with a rounded lid, place the rose petals and the bowl in the middle; gently pour water over the petals, making sure no water gets inside the bowl. Tightly close the pot (you can use a kitchen towel, then place the lid over the towel for an even tighter seal.  2. Bring to a simmer; as soon as the mixture simmers, invert the lid and place ice cubes on the lid (see photo above). Check after 15 minutes. The bowl inside the pot should be at least half-filled with a clear liquid, rosewater. Turn off the heat, cool the rosewater and pour into a container and close. Keep in the fridge.  leftover rosewater in pot NOTE: I used a drop of rose coloring; the liquid should be clear though. Only the water simmering with the petals takes on a pinkish color.   blog ward joury Above is the type of rose needed, Rosa Damascena or ward joury. It is a variety with lots of thorns, but extremely fragrant. a rose   dup oury water

Comments

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  1. Rosa says:

    What a lovely colour! It must taste heavenly.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. Oui, Chef says:

    How pretty, I bet the fragrance is amazing!

  3. Margaret says:

    It would be nice to be able to make my own rosewater.

  4. Ivy says:

    Lovely Joumana. My mother had a still but if I ever cultivate these roses I shall definitely try your method.

  5. Cowen Park Kitchen says:

    I was just reading about how to make rosewater at home! Glad to see it turned out nicely for you, I’ll have to give it a try.

  6. Elena says:

    Nice treat, Joumana.
    I prepared by such way fleur d’orange water for my pastries ( especially for Tarte Tropezienne).

  7. Magda says:

    This looks stunning! That color is so beautiful Joumana! I have to find some fresh rose petals..

    • Joumana says:

      @Magda, remember to look for Rosa Damsacena or Damascus Rose. I have even found it in the US and it grows all over the Eastern Med.

      @Susan: You can find or grow this variety in the US (since I have seen it grown in Dallas); the faint pink color is a drop of coloring, the rosewater is actually clear.

  8. Susan says:

    I wonder if any of my domestic roses could be used! I’ll have to do some research. What a pretty bottle and lovely color.

  9. Paula Mello says:

    Hi Joumana! Long time no see =) I’m back!! enjoyed due to the ease of the process, will be easy to have rosewater for Arab recipes from now on, thank you for sharing this secret!! Love the bottle and the roses are amazing!!!

  10. wizzy says:

    Hmm. I wonder if that type of rose will grow as far south as the Caribbean. I will be on the look out for it from now on

  11. Katherine Kolbus says:

    I love your website! Your cookbook is amazing too!

    Is it possible to make homemade Rose water using dried Damascus Rose petals?

    It’s all I can get a hold of. 🙂

    Thank you very much!

    • joumana says:

      Hi Katherine,

      Honestly, I have never tried it with dried rose petals. I would assume that you could, just like people are using dried eggplant, dried okra, dried tomatoes, etc, to make dishes.
      I would start with a small quantity and watch it carefully. I noticed with mine that the flavor intensified a year later.
      I would also keep it in the fridge. If you find that the rose flavor is there, great! You just came-up with a new technique!
      Dried rose petals are used in a spice mix in the southern part of Lebanon where people tend to be influenced by Persian cuisine and it does give out a definite rose scent.

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